Outdoor rec gear festival planned for Fruita

An upcoming festival in Fruita will showcase the outdoor recreation in the area as well as the equipment used in those activities.

The Gear Up Festival is set for April 23 and 24 in downtown Fruita.

St. Mary’s Hospital will serve as title sponsor of the event. Powderhorn Mountain Resort will present a series of short adventure films on April 23 at the Fruita Community Center. U.S. Bank will  serve as a supporting sponsor.

The new name and venue for the event constitutes a change from what was the Manufacturers Outdoor Gear Festival in downtown Grand Junction. The event still will feature vendor displays, live music, raffles and door prizes.

“St. Mary’s has been recognized as a fit-friendly worksite by the American Heart Association. The Gear Up Festival is a real match for the healthy lifestyles we support for our associates and our community. We’re looking forward to advancing the festival and all it stands for,” said Teri Cavanagh, marketing and communications director at St. Mary’s Hospital.

Ryan Robinson, marketing and communications director for Powderhorn Mountain Resort, said the festival and film  presentation will offer an opportunity to sell passes for the summer season as well as the next ski season. The new high-speed quad chairlift installed at Powderhorn can carry mountain bikes, expanding on the summer activities offered at the resort on the Grand Mesa east of Grand Junction.

“We’re now able to offer year-round outdoor recreation with skiing in the winter and mountain biking in the summer,” Robinson said. “We are obviously fully supportive of the outdoor recreation industry.”

The festival also will feature a demonstration by Mickey Wilson, a world champion slackliner, as well as demonstrations of fly fishing, mountain biking and paddle boarding.

The Gear Up Festival will partner with the Colorado Plateau Mountain Bike Trail Association to raise money for its efforts. Proceeds from the beer garden and film festival will go to the organization.

For more information on the Gear Up  Festival, go to www.gearupfestival.com.